Three weeks after Real Salt Lake's 2-1 win at Minnesota United ended with a little bit of tension between RSL goalkeeper David Ochoa and Minnesota head coach Adrian Heath, the matter is officially resolved, according to Ochoa.
Speaking to members of the media in a virtual press conference, the 20-year-old backstop explained why he kicked a ball into the stands at Allianz Field following the final whistle, leading to a well-publicized postgame dust-up between players on both teams. Heath had some choice words for the goalkeeper in his postgame interview on the field, calling him "a kid who's not that good".
Ochoa claims there was no ill intent behind the act, which he said he explained via phone call to Heath in attempt to smooth things over.
"I saw a little kid in the stands and wanted to give him a ball," Ochoa said. "That's how it was, really. It did look bad but I actually gave a call to their coach, Adrian Heath I think his name is. I apologized and he apologized as well for his comment after the game. Definitely a learning moment, just to control myself a little bit, but I saw a little kid. I wanted to give him a ball."
Disrespectful? David Ochoa called out by Adrian Heath
Before the ordeal officially came to an end, Ochoa and RSL did take the opportunity to joke about it. The Utah-based club beat Sporting Kansas City a week later, where the team began a tradition where Ochoa will kick a signed ball to supporters.
Minnesota and RSL meet next in MLS play in just two weeks, when they face off at Rio Tinto Stadium on May 29.